Improvement works to the play equipment and sporting facilities in Dagenham’s Valence Park got underway this week, after a crowdfunding campaign raised over £5000 towards the cost of the project.
Barking and Dagenham resident Lisa Adams has been working on a plan to improve Valence Park for over two years, raising funds for a new playground, gym equipment and a multi-use games area.
These plans were finally realised when work on the project commenced on Monday 7 January 2019, starting with the overhaul of the park’s play area.
All of the existing play equipment is being removed and replaced with brand new multi-play climbing units, swings, a roundabout, new seating, rubber safety surfacing, and a state-of-the-art outdoor gym area from The Great Outdoor Gym Company.
The choice of layout and equipment has been selected following consultation with local residents.
This will see the play area closed until the middle of February.
The basketball court will remain open until early February and then it is being re-designed to create a brand new ‘Hype Court’ by Playinnovation.
It will feature artistic court markings and sensory basketball backboards, while the external area will be extended to feature fun educational and family focused games.
Much like the play area, these were chosen after consultation with local residents. Floodlighting for the court will also be installed and funded by Sport England.
The total funding secured for the project is £269,598, with £140,000 of that money provided by The London Marathon Charitable Trust. The remainder has come from Veolia (£59,999), Sport England (£25,000), crowdfunding (£5,599) and match funding from Barking and Dagenham Council (£39,000).
Councillor Saima Ashraf, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Community Leadership and Engagement, is excited to see work start on the redevelopment:
“This project will significantly improve Valence Park for our residents in the local area, with a range of innovative additions that will transform the facilities on offer,” she said.
“My thanks go to Lisa Adams who has done a tremendous job raising funds for the redevelopment, and it is undoubtedly an exciting time with work just getting under way.
“We are committed to improving our green spaces all across the borough, and this scheme represents one of a number of exciting projects that are taking place in our parks over the coming year.”